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How to get a Lake Taupo Fishing Licence

Lake Taupo is a trout fishing haven, offering excellent boat fishing and shoreline fishing throughout the year. The waters are replete with large brown and rainbow trout, and average 1.4 kg in size. But before you think about catching a whopper, you need to get a Taupo trout fishing licence.

A bit about Lake Taupo

The largest lake by surface area in New Zealand, Lake Taupo was created by a super-volcanic eruption about 25,000 years ago. It is home to the aforementioned rainbow trout and brown trout, as well as other fish species such as koaro, common bully and common smelt.
Over 30 streams and rivers drain into Lake Taupo. It receives between 1250 mm and 2000 mm of rainfall every year. The lake water is clear and safe to swim in, thanks to efforts by the Waikato Regional Council.

What you should know about getting a Lake Taupo fishing licence

Fishing in the Lake Taupo district without a licence attracts an infringement fine or prosecution. The Lake Taupo district comprises the lake and its tributaries, including Lake Kuratau, Lake Rotoaira, Waikato River to Huka Falls, and Moawhango.

The licence is administered by the Department of Conservation. It is valid from 1 July to 30 June each year. A fishing licence that you may have acquired in any other fishing district in New Zealand is not valid in Lake Taupo.

How do you get the licence?

You have two options to buy a Taupo trout fishing licence:

  • Purchase it online from the Department of Conservation website
  • Purchase it in-person from local retailers, visitor centres or service stations that are designated licence agents

Buying a fishing licence online

Visit the Department of Conservation website. Choose the class of licence you want and proceed to make your payment. To make the purchase, you will need to provide the following information: the dates on which you will be fishing in the region, your first and last name, date of birth, and gender.

Buy a fishing licence in the Taupo District

Taupo fishing licences are available from a number of visitor centres, sports shops, retailers in the Taupo area.

  • Shop & Services

    Creel Tackle House

    Turangi's favourite tackle shop. We sell rods, lines, fly reels, waders, boots and accessories.

  • Sports & outdoors

    Fly & Gun Hunting & Fishing

    At Fly & Gun Hunting & Fishing we specialise in fresh water tackle, firearms, hunting apparel and advice for hunting and fishing in the Central North Island. We also carry a huge range of outdoor clothing and camping equipment.

  • Shop & Services

    Hamills Taupo

    Taupo's coolest little fishing and hunting shop, for all of your outdoor adventure needs. Locally owned and operated, pop in for service with a smile or visit hamills.co.nz!

  • Holiday parks & campgrounds

    Motutere Bay TOP 10 Holiday Park

    Pitch the family tent, park the caravan, or campervan, launch the boat, enjoy the family and create holiday memories. Situated on State Highway 1 midway between Taupo and Turangi.

    $39 - $195
  • Sports & outdoors

    Sporting Life Turangi

    Fishing outfitters to the world famous Tongariro River. Whether you’re walking, tramping, mountain biking, rafting, hunting, fishing, boating or just enjoying the great outdoors, Sporting Life is there to make it more enjoyable.

  • Visitor Information Centre

    Taupo i-SITE Visitor Information Centre

    We provide a comprehensive, impartial information an booking service for Taupo, the Great Lake Taupo Region and New Zealand for accommodation, activities, attractions and travel bookings.

  • Sports & outdoors

    Taupo Rod & Tackle

    We specialize in all trout fishing equipment, fly fishing, spinning, trolling, harling and jigging. We have Taupō's best selection of flies and lures, and we know which ones are working!

  • Boutique & Lodge

    Tongariro Lodge

    Tongariro Lodge is New Zealand's most iconic trout fishing lodge. Situated on the banks of the legendary Tongariro River on the Southern shores of Lake Taupo. Enjoy the outdoors in style perfect for trout fisherman and outdoor enthusiasts.

    $199 - $595
  • Visitor Information Centre

    Turangi i-SITE Visitor Information Centre

    We provide a comprehensive, impartial information and booking service for Turangi Tongariro i-SITE (Destination Great Lake Taupo) and New Zealand for accommodation, activities, attractions and travel bookings.

Buying a fishing licence in the nearby towns

Auckland

Botany Hunting & Fishing - The popular hunting and fishing store is among the outlets where you can buy a fishing licence for Lake Taupo.

Waikato

If you will be spending some time in the Waikato region, you can visit any of these offline or online outlets to inquire about getting a Taupo trout fishing licence.

Others

If you're based or staying in Manawatu, Taranaki or the Whanganui region, you can consider purchasing the licence at these outlets:

In Hawke's Bay, you can stop by at Hastings' Rivers to Rangers or Napier's Guns & Tackle.

Lake Taupo fishing licence fees

24-hour licence

  • Adult: $20.00
  • Child: $4.50

Week licence

  • Adult: $42.00
  • Non-resident: $65.00

Whole-season licence

  • Adult: $99.00
  • Senior: $90.00
  • Non-resident: $129.00
  • Family (allows for up to four children): $149.00
  • Child: $12.50

The fees are inclusive of goods and services tax.

Definitions of terms

  • Non-resident: An individual who is neither a citizen nor permanent resident of New Zealand (as per section 4 of the Immigration Act 2009).
  • 24-hour licence: With this licence, you can fish trout within the Taupo District during any 24-hour period mentioned in the licence.
  • Family: A family fishing licence covers:
    • You, or you and your partner/spouse; and
    • Your dependant(s) who ordinarily or periodically reside with you; and
    • Are under 18 years of age on 1 July; and
    • Your grandchildren, who are under 18 years of age on 1 July

• Senior: An individual aged 65 years or older on 1 July

• Child: An individual who is under 18 years of age on 1 July

The fee is non-refundable. In exceptional cases, refunds may be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Note that Lake Rotoaira is privately owned, and you need a permit to go fishing or boating. You can buy the access permit at these retailers:

  • Creel Tackle House & Cafe - 189 Taupahi Rd, Turangi
  • Turangi i-SITE - Ngawaka Pl, Tūrangi
  • The Store State Highway 1 - Te Rangiita, Turangi (gas station 267 State Highway 1, Te Rangiita, Tūrangi 3334, New Zealand)
  • Lake Rotoaira Campground - State Highway 46, Lake Rotoaira, Tūrangi

What information does a Lake Taupo fishing licence contain?

  • The holder's full name, date of birth and postal address
  • Whether the holder is a child or an adult
  • The class of fishing licence and its effect
  • Time and date of issue
  • The period during which the holder is authorised to take trout

Which boating methods are permitted?

Boat fishing, fly fishing and spin fishing: You're required to stay 200 metres away from the stream mouths. The mouths are marked with white, yellow and black rings, so this should be your reference.

Fishing from an anchored boat is permitted less than 200 metres from the Tongariro river mouth, Tauranga-Taupo river mouth and Te Rae Point.

Boat fishing is prohibited in the Taupo Boat Harbour.

Other regulations to know when you get a Taupo trout fishing licence

  1. There is no daily bag limit for fishing on Lake Kutarau, Moawhango and Waipakihi River. In all other waters in the Taupo Fishing District, except Lake Rotoaira, a daily limit of 6 trout per day applies.
  2. The use of electronic devices for attracting fish is not permitted.
  3. Selling or purchasing trout is illegal.
  4. The taking of fish indigenous to Lake Taupo is forbidden. It is permitted only for members of the Ngati Tuwharetoa tribe.
  5. Felt-soled boots cannot be worn when trout fishing.
  6. After reaching your daily bag limit of trout, you cannot fish any more for the day.

Disclaimer: The process of getting a licence is subject to change. Always check with the licence agent for up-to-date information.

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  5. How to get a Lake Taupo Fishing Licence